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In cooperation with the Netherlands Institute for War Documentation
Volume Editor:
An obvious hiatus amidst the abundance of Pacific War studies is the story of Indonesia during that period. The Encyclopedia of Indonesia in the Pacific War, edited under the aegis of the Netherlands Institute for War Documentation, now fills that gap.
This state of the art work reflects the different experiences and historiographic traditions of Indonesians, Japanese, and Dutch. The aim is to present the developments in the Indonesian archipelago in as much a rational and dispassionate way as possible, taking into account regional and social variations and interpreting them within the international context of pre- and post-war trends. With due acknowledgement of different perspectives, ambiguities, unresolved issues and conflicting views, it sets out to enhance mutual understanding and academic dialogue.
In: Indonesian Economic Decolonization in Regional and International Perspective
In: The Encyclopedia of Indonesia in the Pacific War
In: The Encyclopedia of Indonesia in the Pacific War
In: Chinese Indonesians and Regime Change


This paper discusses the paramount role of the Oei Tiong Ham Concern (OTHC) of Semarang in the “Buy Chinese Products” movement of the Republican Government during the period 1928–1937 and its attempts to control Java’s sugar trade with China during the same period. In doing so, the paper focuses on the personal relations between Chen Kung-po (Chen Gongbo), the Republican Minister of Trade and Industry, and the OTHC leadership, as well as the close collaboration between the Dutch-educated Peranakan and Totok Chinese business elites of Java in intensifying economic relations between China and Java. The paper thereby reassesses long-held views about attitudes and economic roles of the Westernized Peranakan Chinese elites and questions the usefulness of simplified political frameworks in analyzing the complex dynamics of intra-Asian trade and commerce in the highly politicized business environment of the 1930s.

In: Journal of Chinese Overseas
The existing literature on Chinese Indonesians has so far tended to take an approach of either victimization and marginalization or a focus on elite businessmen and their economic influence. This volume takes a different perspective. The Chinese in Indonesia were not only innocent victims of history, but were simultaneously active agents of change. Chinese Indonesians from different walks of life played an active role in shaping society during regime changes and found creative and constructive ways to deal with situations of adversity. This book demonstrates that regime changes in Indonesia did not only pose threats of violence, but also offered opportunities that induced “agency” on the part of Chinese Indonesians to shape their own destinies and that of the country.
Editors: and
This collection of essays provides insights into the complex process of economic decolonization in Indonesia from a variety of perspectives. The emancipation from Dutch colonialism in the economic sphere is linked to the unique features of the new nation-state emerging in newly independent Indonesia. This included a key role in business for the military. A key part was also played by indigenous Indonesian business firms that were shaped by the Japanese occupation and the Indonesian Revolution.
The analysis embraces two types of comparisons. Different experiences of economic decolonization across regions are illustrated by events unfolding in the agricultural estate areas of Deli in North Sumatra and Jember in East Java. Here the focus is on confrontations between private Dutch capital and Indonesian labour unions. In addition, the overall experience of Indonesia is offset against similar processes at work in other former European colonies in Asia, in particular neighbouring Malaysia. The international comparison shows how dramatic and difficult economic decolonization was and also how profound its consequences were.
With contributions from Tri Chandra Apriyanto, Anne Booth, Jasper van de Kerkhof, J. Thomas Lindblad (editor), Daan Marks, Peter Post (editor), Bambang Purwanto and Thee Kian Wie.